* Want to help out some Christian racers in need of a little support? Check out the new sponsorship promotion at www.teamfaith.com. It’s too long to explain here, but the concept is pretty cool!* EVS Sports recently announced the hiring of arenacross specialist Tommy Hofmaster, who will fill the role of Athlete Marketing Manager for the Wisconsin-based protective wear company. Congrats, Tommy!* Glenn Kearney has signed with Husqvarna for the 2009 GNCC season. With Wyatt Seals as his mechanic, we think that the speedy Aussie has a good shot at improving on his two podium finishes from last year. Go get ‘em, mate!Top Story
Huffman Wins EnduroCross Final, Dietrich Takes Championship
After six brutal rounds of racing, Team Monster Energy Kawasaki came out on top of the AMA/Maxxis EnduroCross Championship Series presented by Lucas Oil. Damon Huffman broke out of the gate at the Las Vegas finale like a man possessed, taking his Kawasaki on a flawless tear around the track to score the final win of the year. Behind him, Team Green star Ricky Dietrich took the runner-up spot and, more importantly, the AMA championship. Red Bull KTM racer Taddy Blazusiak had a tough time with the course and ended up getting pushed out of third by an inspired Geoff Aaron, who was more than comfortable running the pace on his Christini two-wheel-drive KTM two-stroke.The final round was a nail-biter from the beginning, as a massive turnout of domestic and international off-road stars showed up to try to knock the Kawasakis out of the top spot. World Enduro Champ Mika Ahola, trials hero Patrick Smage, Canadian Bobby Prochnau, Ty Davis, Sbastien Tortelli, Kurt Caselli, Jamie Lanza, Destry Abbott, Nathan Woods, Wally Palmer and Nathan Kanney all battled for points-paying spots on the evening. Lucas Oil talent Colton Haaker was forced to sit out the event due to an injury suffered at the World Indoor Enduro in Spain, but he was on hand to sign autographs nevertheless.Although the series is over, fans and racers alike are already looking to 2009 for more EnduroCross action. With six rounds planned for the to-be-announced schedule and a solid lineup of support classes, it’s not too late to start training to make your own run at an EnduroCross championship! Check out www.endurocross.com for more info as it becomes available.Final AMA/Maxxis Enduro Cross Series Point Standings
1. Ricky Dietrich (136 points)
2. Damon Huffman (131)
3. Taddy Blazusiak (99)
4. Geoff Aaron (96)
5. Colton Haaker (86)
6. Nick Brozovich (76)
7. Bobby Prochnau (65)
8. Jamie Lanza (64)
9. Ty Davis (59)
10. Phil Smage (41)Hooked
Loyal Dirt Rider reader Jerry Bufka sent us this photo from the Red Bud Outdoor National. We normally don’t have space in the magazine for reader-submitted photos, but this one was too good. This photo depicts a diaper-clad little fellow at the exact moment of his infection with the incurable two-wheeled bug. We’d bet our last bottle of two-stroke oil that each of us-and 99 percent of you-had a moment similar to this at one point or another.One Industries Gets Into Gear
One Industries began with stickers, jumped into helmets and is now suited up to make a stab at the gear market. Going in at the highest level with Makita Rockstar Suzuki rider Ryan Dungey as their premier athlete, the fashion-conscious designers gave us a set of their new stuff to try out and sent us off for a ride. Well, it is gear and if you’re familiar with anything on the high end of the price scale, then you will be very familiar with the One Defcon suit. Technical in the venting and trick on the materials list, this gear should start popping up shortly at the track and on the shelves of dealers everywhere. For a better look at the stuff, check out the video we have online at www.dirtrider.com.
More Than A Trade Show
The EICMA Motorcycle Show in Milan, Italy, went off in November displaying thousands of off-road goodies from Italy. A few cool items seen were these big and beautiful 53mm Marzocchi forks, an MX version of Aprilia’s twin-cylinder bike, Benelli MX and off-road bikes with their aluminum and carbon frames, and this Italy-only Suzuki enduro, a conversion done by Valenti. Unfortunately, the show was interrupted when a round of the European Supercross Series broke out in the parking lot. The event held an FMX show, a supermoto, an endurocross, a supercross, then capped the weekend with a three-man team race combining supermoto, endurocross and supercross. The riders raced all three combined tracks for a 10-minute moto each. After the first session the leader was Ryan Beat, the lone American at the event, riding for Magic Yamaha/Progrip/One Industries/Alpinestars. His team went on to eventually finish second overall. Italy’s a long way to go, but if you ever find yourself there in November, don’t miss this event-and take it easy on the espressos!Shameless DirtRider.com Plug
OK, we have to do it because we put a lot of work into it. Yes, our formerly pathetic and now loaded with content but still a little difficult to use website needs you take a look at it. Not so you can tell us what we already know (yes, it is a little hard to find some stuff and I know you’ve seen better), but so you can see some of the really cool stuff we’ve been putting up there. Things like complete pipe comparisons for the 2009 bikes, web-exclusive bike first impressions, full first tests of bikes that don’t make the magazine and videos of a lot of the stories you’ve seen and will be seeing right here in the printed version of Dirt Rider. We don’t like to brag, but we’re pretty proud of some of our digital content, especially if you find it interesting. And there are even some pretty cool items submitted from guys just like you, our loyal readers. So if you want to get a start in this business, get to work and make a mark on www.dirtrider.com.2009 Supercross Predictions
It’s official: Supercross is upon us. As with any exciting new season, the 2009 supercross series inevitably brings new heroes to cheer for, new television broadcasts to critique and new trophy girls in the backs of new pickup trucks who shoot new T-shirts at the new crowd with the same old swag cannon. So what’s the buzz around the DR office about ’09? Pull up a chair, because here are our thoughts!Who is your pick to take the supercross championship this year?
“Last year I bet Sean Finley, our publisher, that if James Stewart lost the SX title I’d run a marathon. It turns out James can’t win with a bum knee. It’s a good thing I’m not a man of my word or else I’d have died in the marathon Finley ran with a hernia (true story, he’s an animal). For ’09, I’m going with Stewart all the way. And I’m willing to wager the same marathon that I didn’t run last year on it. Stewart is going to destroy everyone and make them (not me this time) look silly.” -Jesse Ziegler”I’m going to go with my buddy Reed. He’s tough as nails and I think he has more to prove than the other guy. Or guys.” -Jimmy Lewis”I think Ryan Villopoto is going to kill it this year on the big bike. The kid has been working his tail off, and it wouldn’t surprise me if he came out on top at the end of the season.” -Chris Denison”Bubba.” -Reid Douglas”Chad Reed. I don’t want him to win, but I think he will.” -Joe McKimmy”My money’s on Stewart. I just hope it’s close. I predict Alessi will win one late in the season.” -Pete Peterson”I don’t care who wins as long as there is good racing for the whole series. Ideally the championship should come down to the last race, and Kevin Windham would win, but I think Stewart will do it.” -Karel Kramer
DR: How long have you been riding on the 450s?
JG: For about a couple months now. I had a few races that I did back last supercross season, and that was really it, so this is my first real go at the 450.DR: I mean before that, practicing on them, getting a feel for them?
JG: I’ve been racing on them since amateurs. That’s usually what you do when you go up through the ranks.DR: What’s the toughest thing about adapting your style to the 450?
JG: Nothing. I think my style is suited for a 450, and that’s what I think is gonna bring success to this year.DR: What are your goals for 2009?
JG: To get on the podium a few times and hopefully try to get some race wins and stay up in the point chase.DR: Are you looking forward more to supercross or the outdoors?
JG: Supercross is more my style. I like the flash of it and the atmosphere.Cody Cooper
DR: When did you get the call to be on Joe Gibbs Yamaha?
CC: We’d been talking with about four rounds to go (in the 2008 outdoor series). My manager had spoken to them at the beginning of the year, but they’d already gotten their riders. It just fell into place. Everything went well, and after des Nations I got on their bike and started riding, so I’ve been on it for a little while now.DR: Did the change require a move?
CC: Yeah, I’ve moved up to North Carolina where the team’s based. I like the area and it’s easy training with other people. We’ve got a trainer who works with us every day; I’ve always got someone to do that with. And someone to ride with. We all hang out as mates, too. It’s pretty fun.DR: The impression is that you had a pretty minor support ride prior to joining this new team, which is considered a big, all-encompassing team. What’s the biggest change?
CC: I’ve been on the big Honda team in Australia so it’s sort of like that, but on a bigger scale. It just feels the same to me, doing the same riding and I don’t want to really get into the big side of it…all I’ve got to think about is riding and training and being as good as I can. That’s my job. The team is great. All the stuff they’ve provided us to train and do what we need to do is mind blowing, pretty much.DR: How’s it been adapting to the new bike?
CC: Good, A couple times when I first got on it, it felt different, but now when I get on, it’s what I’m expecting. I know what it feels like when I’m not even sitting on it.DR: In the 2008 outdoors you were the only guy who could match Stewart’s speed on several occasions. It put you in the spotlight. What are your goals for 2009?
CC: For motocross I definitely want to do better than I did this season. Top five will beat it. Supercross is still a little bit away, but I want to do the Switzerland supercross before I set some goals. Get a race under my belt and see where I’m at and then I can set some realistic goals.DR: What’s the supercross track like that you train on at the Joe Gibbs facility?
CC: It seems pretty easy at the moment. After coming out here and riding the Yamaha test track, that one’s pretty gnarly.DR: Is supercross fun for you or is it more of a struggle?
CC: I think it’s quite fun, but now and then I get frustrated. It’s just only because I want to be…you gotta put the effort in, so it’s hard when I try to learn something and it’s not happening. But it takes time. I’ve got to just gradually go into it, otherwise I won’t be riding at all, I might get hurt. So I just take it one step at a time.Dirt Rider Gone Skate
Dirt Rider isn’t usually known for influencing any of the skateboarding industry-until now. Hawaiian local Justin Burbage was spotted at a local skate comp in Mililani, Hawaii, sporting his Dirt Rider shirt proudly while showing off his signature “Flick” trick. Way to represent and thanks for the support.